Duterte ‘privately’ dealing with China invasion in West PH Sea – Palace
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte’s actions to address disputes with China is being done in private, Malacañang said Thursday, asserting that diplomatic initiatives do not have to be made in public.
“Ang larangan ng diplomasya, isang exception to freedom of information,” according to presidential spokesperson Harry Roque.
(The field of diplomacy is an exception to freedom of information.)
“Kung ano man ang ginagawa ng Presidente, hayaan nating gawin niya iyon sa isang pribadong pamamaraan dahil hindi naman po dapat inaanunsyo sa publiko ang mga diplomatic initiatives o hakbang na ginagawa ng Pangulo,” he also said when asked how Duterte is using the country’s close ties with China in addressing issues in the disputed waters.
(Whatever the President is doing, let us allow him to do it in a private manner because diplomatic initiatives and efforts the President is doing need not be announced.)
Roque previously said Duterte wants the rift over China’s presence at Julian Felipe (Whitsun) Reef in the West Philippine Sea resolved through peaceful means, counting on the two nations’ cozy relations, which the President cultivated since assuming power in 2016.
“So let’s leave the President to his own devices. Napakita naman po niya na so far, in the past five years of his administration, we have moved from an antagonist with China to a position of friendship,” Roque said.
“Malaki naman po ang mapapakinabang natin ngayong nakakapagusap tayo ng bansang Tsina,” he insisted.
(There are advantages now that we can talk with China.)
The Philippines has begun filing daily diplomatic protests over the continuing presence of the Chinese ships at Julian Felipe Reef.
The Department of Foreign Affairs has also summoned Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian over the lingering presence of China in the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone.
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